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Introduction

Electronic bank statement configuration and usage, in a casual contract accounts scenario, spreads through FI module (importing EBS from file to SAP), FI-CA module (parsing the EBS, recognizing the payments and posting them), and then back to FI module (posting to general ledger accounts via reconciliation key). In the next couple of pages I’ll try to make a simple scenario which will cover the stated steps. Main goal of this document is to easier set-up the initial configuration which can then be expanded and modified to suit various business needs.

Prerequisites

Since our main focus is the FI-CA module, I’ll asume that the basic configuration for the electronic bank statement in FI module is already set. Nevertheless, I’ll point out the main configuration items/tasks that you need to check (or carry out, in case theyre not yet set):

  1. In case your country has specific input file parameters (as Croatia has), you will have to deal with this first. Go through notes and see the correct way of implementation your specific case. Usualy, you will have to go through expanding include programs and enabling enhancements in CMOD, which is pretty straight-forward process.
  2. IMG – Financial Accounting (new) – Bank Accounting – Business Transactions – Payment Transactions – Electronic bank statement – Make Global Settings for Electronic Bank Statement – this is your first stop. Go through the following sections and check if you have the correct configuration:
    1. Create Account Symbols – you should have at least two accounts here: bank account and temporary or transitional account, although common practice is to use one temporary account for incomming payments and the other one for outgoing payments. For the sake of simplicity, we will use just one.
    2. Assign Accounts to Account Symbols – this is where you link the account symbol you created in the previous step with the real general ledger account. You should have, in your system, defined general ledger account for both (or three of them) account symbols from previous step.
    3. Create Key for Posting Rules – in this section, you need to have at least two keys defined. Preferably, make your own key which will be used to define posting of incomming payments, the ones you will transfer to FI-CA and parse there.
    4. Define Posting Rules – for the already stated Key for Posting rules, check that you have defined posting. Usualy, you will have bank accounting posting defined (posting area 1), where you will post debit to bank account and credit to temorary or transisional account.
    5. Create Transaction Type – you should have at least one transaction type existing. When going in its sublevel (Assign External Transactions), you should have covered the possible transactions that will come from your electronic bank statement file, or the enhancement that will parse it.
    6. Assign Bank Accounts to Transaction Types – make sure that you have defined bank accounts for which you will import electronic bank statement.

Shortened: we have defined bank and transitional accounts, transactions that may occur in the file and the rules that tell the system how to post the items.

Having this set, we should be able to successfully import electronic bank statement file from local computer to SAP system and post it between bank account and transitional account.

FI-CA EBS Setup

Importing electronic bank statement in FI-CA can happen by transfering the already imported EBS file (what we are explaining here) and by importing a multicash file directly to FI-CA (which is subject to another post, and will not be covered here). Going with the first method, we have big part of the process already covered. What we have to do next is: import the items that are classified as incomming payments to FI-CA module, and either post them or leave for clarification.

Let’s move to the IMG – Financial Accounting (new) – Contract Accounts Receivable and Payable – Business Transactions – Payments – Processing Incoming and Outgoing Payments – Define Transactions for Electronic Bank Statement Transfer configuration item.

Here we need to state which external transaction (check step 2.e) will we use, and what is it for. We can chose among several options: incomming payments, returns, payment orders and cheques. Again, for the sake of simplicity, we will use only one transaction and we will say its incomming payments (1). With this one line, we have enabled everything that we need for transaction FPB7 to import items from EBS that have this type of transaction.

Note to Payee Interpretation

Important process of the electronic bank statement is note to payee interpretation. These steps analyse the data from the item and, using predefined rules, attempts to determine the document number, contract, contract account and/or business partner to which should the payment be assigned. This process should, in short, work like this: you, as an invoice issuer, will state what payer has to put as payment description when paying your invoice.

The best option is to have the reference to the document number. Its the easiest way to identify which invoice has been paid, and, which document is to be cleared with the payment. There are lots of different ways to achieve this, and it would definetly require a document of its own, but again, for simplicity cause, Ill try to give the simple scenario.

Configuration is here: IMG – Financial Accoutning (New) – Contract Accounts Receivable and Payable – Business Transactions – Payments – Processing Incoming and Outgoing Payments – Define Interpretation Rules for Note to Payee. For this example, we will make the SAP document number. We need to create a new entry which we will parametrize. Once done, go to Structure sublevel and enter parameters (field lenght is the lenght of your document number, character set defines wether there are only number or other characters, minimum and maximum values can help you make sure you have the right number out of all the numbers you can get in the electronic bank statement item, and partial transfer can make a beginning or ending offset). Under Assigned Selection Categories make an entry with the Document as selection category. With setup like this, you will be able to identify the exact invoice which is paid and displayed on bank statement.

Another important part is clearing. Once the note to payee interpretation does its magic, and based on the clearing setup, the clearing process is triggered and the documents, again: based on the rules, get cleared. However, clearing process is process of its own, and is already elaborated in SAP documents, and will not be explained here.

Usage

First, let’s import the electronic bank statement file from the local computer in the SAP system. Assuming all above written is set, we need to start transaction FF_5. Depending on your case, you need to select the correct electronic bank stamement format. It might be SWIFT MT940 with field 86 structured, XML, Multicash or any other supported format (note: check step 1 for country-specific formats).

Now we have our bank statement imported in FI, and we can check that with transaction FEBA. For incomming payments, we should only have one posting (D: bank – C: transitional account).

Then, we can move to the next step: transaction FPB7. This transaction will check the imported file and pull all items with transaction that represents incomming payments (see above: FI-CA EBS Setup) into payment lot. Depending on the options you set, it will create, create and close, or create, close and post payment lot. Since we want one lot to hold only payments from the one EBS, we should use at least “close lot” option.

Once the lot is created, you can check its parameters and items via transaction FP05. If you havent stated otherwise (in posting area 1005), payment lot name is generated from bank short key, year and bank statement number.

Third step (for this simple scenario) is clarificication. Either through “Postprocess” button in FP05 or transaction FPCPL, we should assign payments to documents, contracts, contract accounts or business partners. Items that appear here are the ones that could not be “understood” by the Note to Payee recognition process.

Finaly, we need to transfer the postings to general ledger. The process, much like the clearing, is out of this scope and I will just point out how its done. Once you post the payment lot, reconciliation key is closed and is ready for transfer to general ledger. You do that via transaction FPG1.

Additional information

There are several articles on SCN regarding different scenarios of electronic bank statement. Some of them are these:

Lockbox and then FPB7

Automaticly start FPB7

Electronic Bank Statements in FICA

EBS Configuration in FICA

FI-CA import MT940 file to Multicash

Conclusion

This document describes the simple process of importing electronic bank statement file in SAP, pulling items to FI-CA, interpreting them and finaly transfer postings to general ledger. I hope it will be useful for consultants to set and test the process and give them a quick start in this area.

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